It seems like every day, we hear about a new threat to the Second Amendment. Whether it’s President Biden’s call for a ban on assault weapons or the ATF’s attempts to restrict the ownership of gun components, the right to bear arms is constantly under attack. And now, we have Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida speaking out against the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF).
Gaetz recently delivered a speech on the floor of the House chamber, calling the ATF an “unlawful agency” and urging his colleagues to help eliminate it once and for all. He cited the latest guidance from the ATF that restricts the ownership of gun components and called it a direct assault on the Second Amendment.
Gaetz is now pushing for a bill that would abolish the ATF in its entirety. His bill, H.R.374, the “Abolish the ATF Act,” simply reads: “The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives is hereby abolished.” It has been referred to the House Judiciary Committee.
But why is the ATF such a threat to the Second Amendment? Well, the organization recently announced that it would treat pistols with stabilizing accessories like short-barreled rifles, which require a federal license to own under the National Firearms Act. Gaetz noted that many disabled veterans in his district utilize the stabilizing bracing to shoot effectively and safely, and that the ATF’s decision would turn them into felons.
.@RepMattGaetzFL: "The ATF cannot be trusted, it needs to go, we need to Abolish the ATF before they abolish our Second Amendment rights."#AbolishTheATF pic.twitter.com/JThaN3Q5hq
— American Firearms Association (@2A_Freedom) February 2, 2023
The ATF has defended its decision to treat the modified pistols no differently than rifles. Attorney General Merrick Garland announced the restrictions to stabilizing brace accessories and said they should be subject to “heightened requirements.”
The Biden Administration chose to shred the Constitution today. @ATFHQ submitted their pistol brace "final rule" to the Federal Register and demanded Americans either "register" or "surrender" their lawfully owned rifles.
Joe Biden is an enemy of our Second Amendment. pic.twitter.com/fY8SsqtqH2
— NRA (@NRA) January 14, 2023
It’s clear that the ATF is trying to restrict the rights of gun owners, and silence the voices of those who are fighting for the Second Amendment. We must stand with Gaetz and his colleagues to make sure that the ATF doesn’t succeed. The right to bear arms is an important part of our Constitution, and it must be defended at all costs.
Erica Carlin is an independent journalist, opinion writer and contributor to several news and opinion sources. She is based in Georgia.